Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Oh Happy Day: The Fence is Up!

"Nothing ventured, nothing gained" is a saying I heard a lot in my home growing up. Perhaps that attitude fostered in me a bit of the risk taker. It certainly didn't hurt.

I ventured a fence building project. Ninety-five percent of the results are in... and once again... I am thoroughly adequate!

My dad used to say, "Son, just try to be above average."

I used to think that was aiming rather low, but above average sometimes means "good enough." Everything doesn't have to be your best, but if you can do above average, or at least adequate, then you've accomplished something.

The biggest hurdle in this project was moving the 6' by 8' panels from the back yard to the side yard. Each of the panels weigh about 150 pounds. Besides transporting them to the side, each panel had to be lifted over some plants and into place.

The biggest hero in this project is my nephew, John. He came over and helped me. "Two are better than one" is what Solomon said, and I totally agree. John not only helped me move the panels, he helped me attach them to the poles. Plus, he had a cordless power drill that could drive screws.

Some parts of some projects require help. I got help today, because I asked for it. It wasn't a huge deal for John. He's on vacation this week, but his wife's not. He has the time. It wasn't a huge deal for John, but it meant a lot to me. I couldn't have done it by myself.

Sometimes we have the opportunity to do a favor for someone. It may not be a big deal to us, but it is to them. Sometimes, we are the needy ones, and the help is deeply appreciated.

That's what friends are for. That's what family is for. But there is no guarantee that friends and family will come through. But when they do... how sweet it is!


  1. Congratulations! The fence looks great. It's nice when friends and neighbors help each other. It make the world a kinder place. What's the next project?

  2. Not that I expected anything less, but the end result is beautiful. Nothing left to do now but enjoy it. It looks like an inspirational place to write. Aw, now I'm jealous.

  3. @septembermom: Thanks. My nephew's stock is now premium! Next big project is to sell my daughter's 1969 VW bug. (It's been in my driveway for a year or so, and I've loaned her all it's worth. She's given me the title, now I just have to sell it. But I may have a buyer: a serviceman. Who gets a good discount.)

    @CrazyMo: Thanks. The nice thing is that in So Cal, our good weather lasts most of the year. My wife, dog, and I sat out there for 1/2 hour this evening. Very nice already. I have a few small things to finish off, but the big parts are done. Your jealousy is the ribbon on the package: thank you. ;-)

  4. "Just try to be above average" is a quote from grandpa Evans. It is a thing that he would say. There was also a very excellent variation of that quote which I cannot remember, though I wish I could.

  5. Another observation has occured to me. Grandpa never "tooted his own horn". Grandma had the saying (do you remember it), "If you don't toot your own horn, nobody else will." It was a very practical saying, and though it may be correct, it is not pretty. And it was the opposite of grandpa's philosophy of life. He never tooted his own horn, and it may well be that his personal quest for excellence usually passed unnoticed. It was one of the marks of his life.

  6. @Dennis: Although my family visited quite a few times with Grandpa and Grandma, I recall very little of what Grandpa said.

    The most I remember of him talking was when he was showing us his slides. At Sun City, he gave us a tour of the lapidary shop where he polished his rocks.

    I was in my early teens when Grandpa passed, and I remember doing more things with Grandma, mostly cards and puzzles. I think because you were older and more aware, you have a more robust perception and memory.

    I also remember visiting Grandpa just before he died. I think it was the last time he shaved. (He had to get help, but wanted to look his best.)